If you suffer from frequent or severe migraine symptoms, you should see a GP. You may need to try several different types of treatments before finding the most effective one.

There is currently no cure for migraine, but there are several treatments available to help ease the symptoms.

During an attack

When experiencing a migraine attack, most people find that lying in a darkened room or sleeping is the best thing to do. Others find that eating can help, or that they start to feel better after they have been sick.

Over the counter medicines

If you think you may be suffering from migraines, it is a good idea to see a doctor to gain an accurate diagnosis. You may find that painkillers such as paracetamol, ibuprofen or aspirin; or combination treatments containing an analgesic and an anti-sickness agent, can help to reduce your migraine symptoms. However, if you find that you cannot manage your migraines using these medicines, your GP may recommend a stronger painkiller or a triptan.

Painkillers, such as paracetamol, ibuprofen and aspirin may help to relieve your headache They tend to be best taken at the first signs of a migraine attack, allowing them time to absorb into the bloodstream. When taking these medicines, always make sure you read the instructions on the packaging and follow the dosage recommendations. Children under 16 should not take aspirin unless it is under the guidance of a healthcare professional.

Triptan medicines, may be recommended to you by your GP if ordinary painkillers are not relieving your migraine symptoms. They may recommend taking painkillers in addition to a triptan, and possibly anti-sickness medicine. Triptans are available as tablets, injections and nasal sprays. They’re a specific painkiller for migraine headaches. You will usually have a follow-up appointment after your first course of treatment. If the medication was ineffective or caused unpleasant side effects, your GP may recommend a different type of triptan.

Anti-sickness medicines, known as anti-emetics, can successfully treat migraine in some people even if you do not experience feeling or being sick. These are prescribed by a GP, and can be taken alongside painkillers and triptans. As with painkillers, anti-sickness medicines work better if taken as soon as your migraine symptoms begin. They usually come in the form of a tablet, but are also available as a suppository.

Combination treatments work to treat your headache and nausea symptoms, containing both painkillers and anti-sickness medicines (anti-emetics). They should be taken at the first sign of a migraine attack. One such medication is MIGRALEVE™, which contains two analgesics, paracetamol and codeine to treat your head pain, together with buclizine to relieve nausea. Click here  to find out more about our products.

You can buy a number of combination medicines for migraine without a prescription at your local pharmacy. If you’re not sure which one is best for you, ask your pharmacist.

For more information about treatment, please refer to the NHS website here


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Always read the label. Ask your pharmacist for advice.

MIGRALEVE contains paracetamol, buclizine and codeine. MIGRALEVE Pink contains paracetamol, codeine and buclizine. MIGRALEVE Yellow contains paracetamol and codeine.

Can cause addiction. For three days use only. This medicine can make you feel sleepy. Do not drive while taking this medicine until you know how it makes you feel.

This site is published by Johnson & Johnson Limited which is solely responsible for its contents. It is intended for a UK audience. MIGRALEVE is a registered trademark.

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© Johnson & Johnson Limited 2015. This site was last updated on: 27th June 2022

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